€38 million wind farm investment begins in Wicklow

Following the granting of full planning permission by Wicklow County Council, construction and development to the value of €38 million has begun on Ballycumber Wind Farm.

The investment, which has created 50 jobs in the construction phase of the project, is taking place in Ballycumber, Co. Wicklow.

Ballycumber Wind Farm is a co-operative of local people from the Wicklow area. According to a spokesperson, it is a stand-alone independent Irish company, which has been established for the sole purpose of the development of a wind farm facility to supply renewable green energy to the Irish electricity grid.

The wind farm itself will consist of six Siemens wind turbines, with a total capacity of 19.2MW.

It will not impact on any residential area or homestead when it becomes operational, the company spokesperson has assured, adding that the turbines will be not be closer than 1km to the nearest residence. The wind farm is expected to begin producing energy in early 2018.

The company claims that the farm will provide power for the equivalent of 11,700 homes and account for the removal of 28,700t of carbon emissions on an annual basis.

Ballycumber Wind Farm will contribute to the Irish government’s stated target of sourcing 40% of electricity from renewable sources by 2020, in line with European targets.

In terms of claimed benefits to the local community, the developer of the wind farm is “committed to upgrading local roads to a higher standard than existing surfaces” and has “continued to protect the environment by replanting trees to replace those removed during construction”.

In addition, Ballycumber Wind Farm has established a community fund, which will include “significant” annual contributions to local schools.

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